And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her. Luke 1:38
Yet Doss enlisted in the U.S. Army in the early 1940’s. How was he going to keep his word when he would be fighting in World War II?
For Doss, his word was important. Yet his heart also told him that he was to answer his country’s call to defend her against all enemies.
Doss found a way to serve without breaking his word. He was one of his company’s medics. He was sent to the Pacific with his unit and saw action in the Battle of Guam, the Battle of Leyte and the Battle of Okinawa.
He kept his word and didn’t take a human life but saved the lives of 75 men, for which he was awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.
It was important to Doss that he keep his word to God. That’s because God had kept his word to Doss by saving him from sin, death, and the power of the devil.
God made a promise to save all humans from sin. The first recording of this promise is in Genesis 3:15. God would continue to give his word to his people – to Noah, to Abraham, to Isaac, to Jacob, to David, and eventually to a young woman from Nazareth named Mary.
It’s safe to say that Mary wasn’t expecting God to single her out, but the angel was sent by God to her to tell her that she would be the mother of the Son of God.
Mary may not have understood fully God’s word to her, but she did understand that this was the culmination of thousands of years of God making and keeping his promise to send a Savior.
Not once do we read that Mary doubted or had second thoughts about her role in God keeping his word to the world.
She answers the angel “let it be to me according to your word.”
God gave his word and God kept his word. Mary accepted that and would do all she could to be a part of God keeping his word now that she had been called to be the mother of Jesus.
When you utter those words, “I give you my word,” or “I promise,” remember that God did the same and kept his word, his promise.
You can, too. You should, too. A man (or woman) who gives their word needs to keep their word. It has been said, “Your word is your bond.” And when a Christian gives his word, it is especially important to keep it because it is a model and a proclamation to the world that God keeps his word.
Of course, it isn’t always possible to keep your word when you give it. I’ve failed in this numerous times (one of which I wrote about in the devotion “The Buddy System” in my book “In My Father’s Footsteps Vol. 1” which you can get here).
And when I failed to keep my word, it hurt. A lot. It hurt the person I gave my word to and it hurt me.
Thankfully, God forgives even this sin. Still, it may take time to heal from the consequences of breaking your word.
If you are waiting for such a healing, hang in there. God will heal. He gave you his word!
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